Harrison and Morphew strike as Needham Market go into next round of FA Cup
PUBLISHED: 11:42 17 September 2017
Needham Market moved into the Third Qualifying Round of the FA Cup by defeating Chesham United, from the Evo Stik Southern Premier League, 2-0 in an enthralling tie at Bloomfields on Saturday.
It was a hard-earned, but thoroughly deserved win against a very capable side.
Both teams played quality football throughout, but a goal in each half settled the tie with help from Market goalkeeper Danny Gay who made a tremendous second half penalty save that denied the Buckinghamshire side a chance to claw their way back into the contest.
The visitors showed their early intent with good possession, and playmaker Adam Watkins tested Gay with a low drive that the keeper was then equal.
However, Needham responded with keeper Hafed Al-Droubi punching clear two Gareth Heath corners, while a third one was only partially cleared to Luke Ingram who powerfully volleyed from 12 yards, but the keeper made an acrobatic save.
The home side, playing with increasing confidence, took the lead on 29 minutes.
A decisive move down the left resulted in Jack Simmons releasing Callum Harrison who cut inside, leaving defenders in his wake, before unleashing a stunning drive past the keeper inside the far post.
Needham doubled their lead on 50 minutes, Dan Morphew rising majestically to nod home Heath’s cross.
‘The Dragons’ fought back, but the hosts showed commendable resilience, with Dan Morphew and ‘Man of the Match’ Sam Nunn outstanding.
The visitors were frustrated when Gay brilliantly saved Oran Swales’ free kick on 70 minutes, before Nunn conceded a penalty for handball.
The spot kick was taken by substitute Callum Bunting who struck his shot powerfully, but Gay made an outstanding low save.
Needham boss Richard Wilkins, said: “It was a great win against a very good passing team that played with high intensity.
“We had them watched in midweek which paid dividends as we recognised there strengths and we adapted accordingly.
“Our work rate was high and we showed resilience late in the game when we had less possession.”